Wolff-Michael Roth
Lansdowne Professor (applied cognitive science)



 .main page

 .publication list
 .cv details

 .students & postdocs


 .ongoing research

   .MA, PhD
   .EDCI 598/7 (Fall 17)

 .other pursuits
   .bee project
   .photo of month


co/editor of

.FQS: Forum Qualitative Social Research

2 book series: .SENSE: science & math
.SENSE: culture & history

contact address


Wolff-Michael Roth
MacLaurin Building A567
University of Victoria
Victoria, BC
V8P 5C2


favorite sites

  .Jay Lemke
  .Jean_François Maheux

  .Damien Vervust










Roth, W.-M. (1998). Designing communities. Dordrecht: Kluwer Academic Publishers.

(ISBN: 0-7923-4703-X [hard], 0-7923-4703-8 [soft])

This book is centrally concerned with knowing and learning in communities, including the roles of setting, tools, artifacts, materials, and community members (who engage in activities with varying degrees of competence across a variety of practices). My ultimate goal, to which the current book contributes, is to construct learning environments in which students have significant opportunities to take charge of their own learning; to construct learning environments that are fundamentally oriented toward democratic ideals--independent of the age of the learner--rather than the preparation of "obedient bodies" (Foucault, 1975) who become fodder for factories and exploitation.

The research presented in this book falls into a category of research labeled "design experiments" (Brown, 1992). As a design scientist, I construct innovative learning environments and simultaneously conduct research on teaching and learning therein. My emerging understandings are fed back into the same classrooms to bring about, and amplify positive conditions of learning. Because of the closeness to the classroom, design experiments constitute research efforts that are not only suitable to generate theory from practice, but--because of the thick descriptions they can provide--inform practice and practitioners in meaningful ways. That is, because design experiments construct theory in practice, they can lead to interventions that work by recognizable standards and are reliable and repeatable in the same and different settings .


update: 09-AUG-17


new work (2012-15)

- "symmetrical ZPD"
- "Becoming and belonging"
- "Limits to generalizing"
- Limits to general expertise
- Experiencing (pereživanie) as developmental category
- On variability in data
- The Emerging Presence
- Vygotsky, Bakhtin, Vološinov
- Theory-practice at work
- Fuzzy Logic
- Theory of Experience
- Online media learning
- Birth of intentions
- Event-in-the-making*
- Post-constructivist ethics
- Pregnance of bodily movement
- Health—personalized science
- Sociocultural perspectives
- Lectures then and now
- Situated cognition
- "I am a Pibidiana"
- Translation—the possible impossible
- Societal mediation of mathematical cognition
- Origin of signs
- Development of concepts
- ZPD symmetrically

making trouble

- "Meaning means nothing"
- What more?
- More reflexivity
- «Mosh»
- Science hegemony
- On editing . . .
- Ethics as social practice
- Political ethics, unethical politics
- Vagaries and politics of funding 1
- Vagaries and politics of funding 2
- Editorial power/authorial suffering


- Radical passivity
- On responsibility . . .
- Identity & Community
- Mêlée & literacy
- Dynamic of life
- Solidarity
- Education and diversity of life
- Living/Lived Math
- Representing mathematical performance
- Indeterminate evolutionary change of language
- Psychology from 1st principles

Science studies
- Struggle over water 2
- Struggle over water 1
- Science and the good citizen
Scientific literacy
- Allgemeinbildung: Readiness for living in risk society
- Citizenship and science education
Gesture studies
- Gestures: The leading edge of literacy...
Workplace math
- The meaning of meaning...
- The emergence of graphing...